Falconer - Chapters From A Vale Forlorn review
|Album:||Chapters From A Vale Forlorn|
01. Decadence Of Dignity
02. Enter The Glade
03. Lament Of A Minstrel
04. For Life And Liberty
05. We Sold Our Homesteads
06. The Clarion Call
07. Portals Of Light
08. Stand In Veneration
09. Busted To The Floor
10. En Kungens Man [bonus]
Chapters From A Vale Forlorn is Falconer's second studio album, they play mostly mid-tempo power metal with some slight Folk influences. Their vocalist, Mathias Blad strongly reminds me of a medieval bard. The bass guitar just accompanies the vocals while the guitarist basically just does as he likes, starting or ending interesting riffs and soloing in the middle of a chorus or a verse. This makes Falconer an extremely interesting band to listen to, it also gives them a quite playful edge. The drum machine just kind of trots along, sometimes a bit slower and sometimes a bit faster, but it doesn't sound as annoying as drum machines often tend to do. The keyboard is only used very seldom and when it is used it is only to contribute to the atmosphere. They also use flute, Hammond organ, piano and violin to add depth to their music on a few songs.
The weak point of this album though, is the bad production; this especially shows on the beautiful ballad "Portals Of Light" of which I'm sure it would sound twice as good with the production a song like this deserves. Their lyrics are about the hardships of medieval times and the greed of the church, however a lot of the passages also remind of modern life. The lyrics are presented in the form of a few neat metaphors "If you look hard you'll see me in the sky, showing you the light that now is for sale. Don't you hesitate, but buy yourself a Grail."
This is clearly one of those CD's which you can listen to over and over again. The songs are rich in variation, ranging from slow ballads, to fast and very catchy songs and tracks with very folkish passages. Despite the use of a drum machine even the drumming has quite some variation. When listening to this CD you will almost always find something new, a strange guitar note you didn't notice before, a nice flute tone in the background accompanying the singing, a change of time signature, anything. This album is so full of such things that listening to it will never get boring.
All in all what we have here is a catchy power metal band with good lyrics, not at all cheesy, some folk influences and a very playful attitude. Definitely a band I would recommend not only to all fans of power metal but also to fans of folk metal or traditional metal; actually this is a band I would recommend to just about anyone.
Favourite tracks: Enter The Glade, The Clarion Call, Portals Of Light
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| Jason W.
Lost To Apathy
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